There is a test that Google’s been keeping in beta for a while that is focuses on bringing text messaging to AdWords ads, and soon, the beta title will soon be shed.
Google’ testing of click-to-text in AdWords search ads has been in beta for several months now. Although extensions have been around for years, these new message extensions will give users another option to connect with businesses that who very call-phobic, as well as those aiming to avoid getting put on hold, listening to menu options, or waiting to get transferred in order to speak to the person they need to talk to at a business.
If a user clicks on a message extension or icon, their phone will automatically launch their SMS app.
As you can see by Google’s example image, you’ll see that the call and message extensions are served in cards below the main ad. This is quite different from showing just the icons to the right of the ad copy that we’re used to seeing. This is a new format, for message extensions, allows advertisers to include a call to action in the extension text.
Also, advertisers will set up an initial text that pre-populates in the messaging app once a user clicks the extension. Users can edit that message before sending, bu it’s an opportunity for advertisers to help users save time by anticipating the thing that they’ll be interested in. If advertisers are able to get this right, then their chances of seeing a better engagement rate will increase.
Even the clicks on message extension will be charged just like a regular click on a headline or extension. Message extension will be able to be set at both the campaign and group levels, and can even be scheduled to appear during certain period of the day. If the messages are run after hours, or on days when the business is closed, you can set expectations in the message text on those extensions. You can even use an autoresonder, which will let users know when to expect a response.
Reporting on message extensions will be found in the extensions tab, and even through Click Type segmentation. Whether message extensions will need to establish their own methods of tracking and measuring value from message extensions.
Google has even released a best practices guide for advertisers to get started with message extensions. This new extension will roll out globally over the next few weeks.